Note, major SPOILERS for Game of Thrones season 5 below...
Game of Thrones is the sort of TV show where more-or-less anything can happen - see: Dragons - and more-or-less anyone can die - see: Red, Purple, and all other weddings. Even so, the more-or-less can still feel awful when it happens.
Case in point: the latest news from one of Game of Thrones' most beloved actors, revealing that he won't be back in season 5, and that therefore another major character likely won't either. It all stems from a recent interview given by Kristian Nairn, who plays Hodor:
“We have a season off and we have a year’s hiatus, solely because I imagine our storyline is up to the end of the books...So, I get my year off now to do Rave of Thrones and gallivant all over the world.”
So, meme-makers should get ready for a quiet year, because Hodor won't be back in 2015. What's more, if Hodor is out, then Bran (Isaac Hempstead-Wright) is almost certainly going to be absent too. After all, Hodor's his ride.
Now, this isn't a huge surprise - fans of the books will recall that George R.R. Martin split the series' characters between the fourth and fifth novels in order to achieve a greater sense of focus (and in some cases both dramatic tension and intense fan annoyance).
All the same, there are a few possible (extra-SPOILERY) implications of the news, which we've cunningly hidden behind the spoiler-protector below:
- If Bran and Hodor aren't set to appear in Season 5, then it's possible other major (and even more beloved characters) won't either. One of the major objections readers of the novels had to the split between books 4 and 5 was having to wait so many more years to find out what happened to Tyrion. Would the series survive a season without it's most famous son?
- Not a lot's been made of Nairn's suggestion that the gap implies he and Bran will make it to the end of the books' story, but if true it suggests that Bran will, eventually, become incredibly important to the series. That's been inferred by fans for years, but it's more of a confirmation of longevity than we usually get.
The big question now? Why is [Game of Thrones](movie:817617) still so darned far away from it's 2015 return?
What do you guys think? Are you on board with Hodor and Bran taking a year off?